Jul 22, 2017

how craniologists argue for male intellectual superiority no matter what empirical evidence they use as the starting point for their arguments

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Craniology and the Battle of the Sexes

INSTRUCTIONS:

Liberal Studies: Gender in Science In God, Women and the New Physics, Wertheim reports on craniology as a scientific discipline. Explain what craniology is and what its supposed purpose is. Explain how craniologists argue for male intellectual superiority no matter what empirical evidence they use as the starting point for their arguments. Explain the objections that can be made against the various assumptions that craniologists make in their arguments, and why, as a scientific discipline, craniology appears to be misguided.

CONTENT:
NameSubjectCourseDateCraniology and the Battle of the SexesCraniology is the study of the shape, size, and proportion of the skull. Craniology emerged as a pseudoscience in the 18th and 19th centuries, and was used as a basis for determining a person’s character and intellectual abilities. The association of intellectual ability with the skull’s size was informed by the belief that cerebral cortex stored a person’s mental faculties. It followed, accordingly, that the larger the skull the bigger the space for storing mental faculties, and effectively, the more intelligent the person. In this essay I discuss the use of craniology to support the age-old patra8crachal ideology that men are intellectually superior to women, and an analysis of why this approach is flawed.Beginning in the mid-18th century, craniology was used in conjunction with anatomy to justify the supposed intellectual superiority of men over women (Wertheim 148). Having successfully measured the size of the human skull, and found that women’s cranial size was relatively smaller in proportion to their bodies than men’s, the Enlightenment philosophers used this new knowledge to support the old belief that women was naturally inferior to women, especially as it pertained to the study of the sciences. In this regard, the purpose of craniology is to deny women the o...


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